10 September 2020

Pista finishes with a flourish to bag Park Hill prize

10 September 2020

Pista continued her progression when powering home in impressive fashion to win the bet365 Park Hill Fillies’ Stakes at Doncaster.

The three-year-old seemed suited by the step up in trip last time out when winning a Listed race at Leopardstown, but this contest marked a rather steep rise in grade.

Last of the field turning into the straight, the rangy filly really hit her stride in the final furlong.

Snow had set the pace but was back-peddling when the favourite Believe In Love took over, although she had no answer to Pista (6-1), who flew home under William Buick to win by a length and a half from Vivionn.

Victorious trainer Joseph O’Brien was landing a rare Group race that his father, Aidan, has still to cross off his list, while Pista was giving her sire American Pharoah a notable winner in England.

“I thought William gave her a great ride. I was a little worried because he was a little bit further back than we’d planned for most of the way and she ran around a bit in the straight, but she’s got a big engine,” O’Brien told ITV Racing.

“She’s a tall filly, so hopefully she’ll progress next season.

“There’s a nice fillies’ race on Arc weekend (Prix de Royallieu) that might suit her now if she comes out of this well.”

She was given an 8-1 quote for the French race by Paddy Power.

Buick added: “Joseph liked her and thought she came here with a good chance.

“It probably wasn’t a strong Park Hill. She had a lovely profile coming in and I thought she did it well – she’s a good, staying filly.

“I thought the race was there for an improver to come through and she was that one horse.

“I think you would have to give her that chance (in the Prix de Royallieu). She’s done nothing but progress all her life and I don’t see any reason why she can’t progress further.”

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox